A word “coffee” comes from Kaffa Province in Ethiopia. The local people were using coffee as a food. Mixing a pulp of green coffee peas with animal fat they were making balls, which they were using as a food in long trips.
The big interest of researchers, manufacturers, and coffee lovers creates a lot of questions – is coffee healthy or unhealthy, what is recommended dosage of coffee, what are coffee consumption limitations? Not so long ago it was considered that only because of caffeine coffee has an impact on human health, but the newest researches show have shown that there are a lot of other elements, which have some impact on human health, as well. For example, substances that are forming during pyrolysis or, in other words, during coffee roasting.
From all types of coffee the biggest amount of caffeine is found in instant coffee, regardless of what breed it is made. It is known, that caffeine has an effect on cerebral cortex. Caffeine stimulates physical activity, increases ability to work as well as shortens reaction time. Absorption of caffeine in the body depends on the way the coffee is prepared. If you drink coffee with sugar or, in other words, unfiltered coffee, absorption speed significantly decreases.
Caffeine also increases the amount of fatty acids in blood, therefore it is recommended to avoid instant coffee – sludge of instant coffee usually contains lipids (fats that reside in blood), but also filtered coffee may leave a greasy layer on mug’s walls.
Not everybody knows that an equal portion of tea contains almost twice as much caffeine than coffee, but in the cup of tea we find two times less caffeine than in the same size coffee cup. Actually there are no paradoxes – in order to make a cup of tea we take a small amount of tea if we compare it with an amount of coffee. To make a cup of coffee we use approximately 10 to 12 grams of coffee, but to make the same amount of tea we use a couple of tea leaves. Because of that a cup of coffee contains approximately 0,2 grams of caffeine, but a cup of strong tea contains only 0,1 grams of caffeine. Another alkaloid of coffee is trigonelin, which has tonic effect, but it also has an important role in the making of coffee taste and smell.
It is harmful to use coffee in big amounts because:
- Coffee increases blood pressure;
- It is recommended to avoid coffee if you have gastritis or peptic ulcer;
- Coffee harms kidneys, therefore it is recommended to avoid coffee if you have problematic kidneys;
- Coffee causes an excitation, therefore it is not recommended to use it before sleep, as you will not be able to fall asleep;
- It is not recommended to drink coffee fasting,
- It is not recommended to drink coffee in empty stomach, as it is absorbed only within 10 minutes;
- Coffee increases urine output, therefore you have to be careful if you have problems with urinary incontinence;
- Frequent drinking of coffee makes tooth enamel yellow;
- Also appearance of skin colour becomes worse because of coffee consumption.
Despite of negative effects, coffee has also positive effects:
- Coffee contains vitamin P, which strengthens vascular walls;
- Coffee has an antihistamine-like effect – it decreases allergic reactions;
- Coffee is an excellent antidepressant, therefore it is recommended to use it if you have suicidality.